Our theme for today is healing. In Psalm 147 we heard that the Lord is restoring Jerusalem. He is bringing back exiles, healing the broken hearted and bandaging their wounds.
We need to be quite clear about one thing. God our Heavenly Father doesn’t want us to suffer. He wants to heal us....mentally, physically, emotionally and spiritually....He wants us whole. We read in the Gospels many instances of Jesus healing the sick when He was on earth, and sometimes we might think that miracles no longer happen because Jesus isn’t physically with us now, but miracles continually happen....sometimes they need a bit of input from us.
Miracles of healing do still happen but I don’t believe God wants someone to fall on their face because a faith healer tells her she no longer needs her crutches and can throw them away if she just has enough faith. Miracles can happen with prayer and the healing hands of doctors and other medical staff. Sometimes the miracle is actually the availability of medical specialists and surgeons to be God’s healing hands. Sometimes the miracle is when we can praise our God while accepting we may not be healed, and know that God loves us.
When we moved to Clifton Springs two and a half years ago the weather had been quite dry, but on the first heavy rain, our front veranda flooded. The water lapped almost up to the top of the step. The next day we did a thorough cleanout of the spouting which obviously hadn’t been touched for years. Problem solved we thought. Next time we had heavy rain – the water was again lapping at the door step, so we called in the big guns in the shape of a plumber. Maybe it was a lack of faith on my part, but it didn’t seem much use praying for a miracle without being prepared to help. The plumber really worked a miracle. He had a very clever camera which he poked up the pipe at the roadside (a bit like a colonoscopy for the storm water system) and he was able to diagnose the problem. Apparently a former resident’s son had dropped a tennis ball down the pipe and it got stuck. Bright kid! You cost us a lot of money! However we were happy to pay because the plumber was able to pin point exactly where in the pipe it was stuck...he showed me on his roadside monitor, and marked the spot in the driveway where we should dig the hole (he said if we dug the hole it would it would be cheaper and he would return the following day to fix the problem). Lo and behold it was so. I gave thanks both to the Lord and the plumber. What is the point of people studying for years and inventing clever things if we think we don’t need them, we will just rely on the Lord. Personally I think God must get pretty cheesed off with this attitude – here He has provided experts to help us, so we should gladly accept their help. It is no use praying for healing or a miracle if we refuse the miracle of other humans to provide what we need.
The Lord is good. He spreads clouds over the sky, he provides rain for the earth and makes the grass grow. He takes pleasure in those who honour Him, in those who trust in His constant love. He gives a command to the earth, and what he says is quickly done. We can help heal the land by planting trees to stop erosion and bring the birds to our gardens. We can heal the land by spreading mulch so the rain God sends doesn't just run off into the gutters.
Our children were two years old when we adopted them and they couldn’t speak at all. The theory was that they were boy twins, and also they had had no stimulation for their first two years. There followed years of speech therapy. One morning in prep year after a session with the speech therapist we returned to school and Jason’s teacher told him that as he had missed the library class, he could run over to the library and choose his new book. Jason froze. He was terribly shy. Another little boy came forward, took his hand and said “I’ll come with you Jason”. Geoffrey really was a healer! We can all be healers. I am not going to hang out my shingle stating I am a dentist or chiropractor, because I'm not! But I can heal by praying that the right physician will be available, with the necessary skills to help those in need. I can heal by saying a kind word to those who worry, by lending a hand when someone needs it. Maybe I can heal by replacing a zip for someone who hasn't a sewing machine, or by cooking a meal for someone in need.
I looked up Psalm in the dictionary and the word means a hymn, song or poem of praise. So we need to praise our God for the healing He sends via other people.
P S A L M
P is for prayer. Pray in all circumstances, even when we don't feel like it.
S is for seek. Seek the Lord's guidance in scripture, and in quiet stillness with God.
A is for ask. Don't be afraid or embarrassed to ask for help when we need it.
L is for LOVE - love the Lord and love our brothers and sisters – although we may not like the way they sometimes behave.
M is for me. I matter. (and the me includes all of us as we)
I have a purpose here on earth.
I may not always be sure what it is.
I just have to trust God to use me where he needs me.